I often think about how I’m currently only a few years older than
Jim Morrison and Jimi Hendrix
when they died.
Hendrix made a ripple in the universe not unlike the ice age. His music resonates even now and even though he was given 27 short years to make it happen. His purpose was clear, profound. His life hailed and celebrated by many.
Jim Morrison has people in disbelief till this day because they can’t cope with the pain of losing their American poet. A wave of people inspired to think deeper about the world around them has now given way to another generation.
They he’s alive and well, they think he’s in hiding-like Tupac…
They’re dead, I’m sorry. Big personalities like that don’t stay in hiding.
But the legend lives on, their purpose still clear, their impact still impactful.
How many children were born to the musical stylings of The Doors? How many people were brought to tears in their introspective reflection and decided after all to make up with an old argument while Jimi Hendrix spun around the HiFi turntable?
Both 27 years old when they died.
What have you done with your life thus far?
Bare with me
i’m building up to an allegory here…
If you could choose to have an astronomically positive impact on the world until the end of time and die tomorrow, would you do it?
In a weird way your boring life was necessary for theirs to be what they were. We can’t all be American Poets who die at 27. We can’t all impact everyone in some never way never done before. Who would do the laundry?
What do you have to leave behind in order for you to just die already? What will it take for you to happily sail straight off this mortal coil? Skip into the oblivion.
I asked earlier what you’ve done so far with your life but never mind that… What have I done?! This is, after all, my blog. Not yours. Don’t get introspective on me just yet.
Its no secret
because it’s not worth the effort to keep the secret, that I’m a depressive and entirely broken individual. It wouldn’t take you long to figure out - should you ever hang out with me - that something inside is just…broken.
Before you blame my parents…
It’s not them.
In fact, I have no right to be as broken inside as I am. My damage is entirely self inflicted. I was never raped or abused in any way. There’s no cause and effect here.
Instead what happened is that the universe must, every once in a while, shit out a product that isn’t fit for its skin. With eyes that point inward under eyebrows shaped with disappointment.
For those reading this post who aren’t like me, who are of sound mind and free of guilt, you need me. You need us the same way you need to get the flu periodically.
Again, working up to an allegory here…
Let me walk you through my brand of depression:
You begin taking stock of your past failures. Building an inventory in your mind.
You’re now seeing the ramshackle stack of missed opportunities tower over you and wondering if this is now the foundation on which you have to build your future.
You start flipping through memories until you reach the very earliest ones when the responsibility of self loathing wasn’t yet self mandated.
Yearning for those days when you first discovered something you love, like music, a hobby, Indian food, or even a television show-slowly makes you further detest the present and the sullen prick you’ve become.
I will often sit in a quiet room, almost incapable of doing anything else. Neglecting to turn on the lights, open any curtains or do anything more than just think. Wallowing in my pitiful desire to transport back to the earlier days I’ll watch a show I loved in my easier developing years.
I’ll forget to eat until the night and I shame myself for another mistreatment of my body, another blatant disregard for my health.
My only call to action is when the desire for another smoke arises. Followed by shame and regret once again.
There's no outward performance of what's happening inside. I might be quiet, and that is the only indication that something is wrong. The problem is I’m often quiet at home.
It’s torture for anyone who loves me.
Erin comes home and doesn't know that anything is wrong but also doesn't know that everything is all right.
My face and body are idle, but internally I'm busy examining my world, searching for my place, my purpose, my value, and coming up with no answers.
This periodic infliction happens far less than it used to, it almost never does now.
It's gotten much
better with time.
It has governed my life in every aspect. What I do for work, the things I find interesting and fun, the people I choose to hang around with, everything.
In many ways, it’s actually improved my life.
yes thats right.
It’s improved my life.
There's a lighter side to the illness and it varies greatly from person to person.
For me I find it fosters creativity. It gives me a different perspective and makes me more empathetic towards others. I'm more sensitive to people's feelings.
I work as a freelancer now, which cuts both ways.
I love the freelance lifestyle because I can work whenever I want doing something I enjoy doing, and I never have a boss.
Of course, the flip side to that is dealing with harsh rejection almost daily.
You would think that’s a bad environment for someone like me, but it’s just the opposite.
Having the discipline to work hard comes from having the discipline to keep living. There’s many more aspects to the lifestyle, like knowing how to negotiate and know when you’re being taken advantage of, but this isn’t a blog about freelancing.
The point is that I’m free. I can create my own future. If I’m unsatisfied with something I can change it, learn more, start down a new path, take a break if I’m feeling shitty.
Knowing there’s freedom for me is the biggest link to my happiness. I need to know that it doesn’t matter what I do today, that my being greyed out today isn’t going to end everything for tomorrow.
They say talking helps…
but you and I both know it's the last thing that we want to do at that time. But it is true if you can manage to eek out the words.
I find it incredibly hard to tell someone I’m feeling depressed. Especially if they don’t have it inside them.
I never want to ‘hug it out’ or ‘talk about my feelings’ or ‘go see my doctor’ or ‘try smiling.’
These are all dumb, half baked ideas created by do-gooders thinking they understand what it means. They think depression = sadness. It couldn’t be more different.
Talking to people that don't have that experience is tough because you have to first describe the symptoms which always sound stupid once you say them.
For me it’s all there is.
Taking medication obliterates my ability to feel creative. It’s a ‘damned if you do, damned if you don’t’ situation.
If you feel like I do periodically, know that suicide is never going to fix the problem.
It only fixes our ridiculous global population crisis by a little bit…
Create. Get outside. Leave your life if you want. Pack a bag and travel. Run away. Quit your job or call in sick. Your boss can go fuck himself.
Do anything you need to do to feel right. Just don’t hurt anyone including yourself.
Reach out to me if you want, you know how to type I’m sure.
Being depressed means being happy is so much more enjoyable.
There’s a positive spin on everything
Whether you see it or not.